Triumph Rat Motorcycle Forums banner
  • Hey everyone! Enter your ride HERE to be a part of this month's Bike of the Month Challenge!
121 - 140 of 189 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
113 Posts
Discussion Starter · #121 ·
The tank has dents all over the place from when the bike wrecked. The metal is too thick to get the dents out well, and I wanted to keep it bare metal, so filling the dents wasn't an option. Eventually, I'm going to replace it with a Benelli Mojave tank (there is a company in India that makes new replacement Mojave tanks), but until I save up some money for that, I'm fine running a dented tank. The bike is going to be a melding of cafe and hooligan style, so the dents will sort of fit in, and it's kind of an homage to the fact that this bike was close to going to a scrap crusher. A badge of its second lease on life, if you will.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
915 Posts
Maybe one of those paintless dent repair places can push the out dent from the inside?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
113 Posts
Discussion Starter · #123 ·
I brought it to a guy I know who does that for a living. he is the best I know, and I've seen him make the worst dents (in cars) completely disappear. He said it just isn't possible with that thick metal combined with it being inside a tank, which left him with nowhere to leverage against. There would be tool impressions left in the metal if he tried. The way they get dents smooth normally is to leverage against something, and rub the tool back and forth across the dent to prevent tool impressions. Working inside the tank, he could couldn't do that, and there were some dents he couldn't even get to. I'm over it, the dents will fit the hooligan, old-bike style.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,511 Posts
I weld studs into the middle of the dents and pull them strraight out. I have not come up on a dent i can't remove that way. THen i just cut and file down the point of the stud removed. Very easy to do with a tig welder.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44 Posts
Been keeping my eye on this thread and I have to say you do some awesome work! I really like those side covers and the copper and aluminum leafing. Can't wait to see it all done. Keep up the great work! :applause
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
113 Posts
Discussion Starter · #126 ·
I clear coated the tank, cowl and patent plate today using Eastwood 2K catalyzed clear in an aerosol can. I'm glad they've put 2K clear paint in an aerosol can. It's so much better than non-catalyzed clear.

This is a picture of my home-brew hanger for the tank so I could clear it top and bottom. Yes, it is a total gym turned up on its side, and it worked perfectly.


Pictures of the cowl and tank just after spraying:











Cleared patent plate:



The tank 6 hours later. I think the clear really made the copper pop, and it darkened the steel color a bit. In person, it looks better than I had imagined it would. The copper is so bright, it seems to glow with any amount of light at all:





 

·
Registered
Joined
·
113 Posts
Discussion Starter · #128 ·
I built the rear integrated light unit yesterday. I bought a .025"x6"x18" sheet of aluminum, a 1/16"x3/4"x3' length of aluminum, and used the remainder of a length of 1/16"x1"x3' aluminum that I already had. I cut out the basic shape of the rear of the seat from the sheet aluminum, cut the 1"-wide strap aluminum to size, formed it to follow the curve of the rear of the seat, cut out 1.75" lengths of the 3/4"-wide strap aluminum, bent them into L-brackets, drilled all the holes and riveted it all together. Then I applied adhesion promoter, and stuck on the LED strips with double sided 3M tape. I also drilled small holes for the wires for both strips so the wires run straight through the metal behind the light strips, so no wires show. This is what it looked like at that point:







At this point, I temporarily connected all the wiring and relays to test the light operation. I have it wired so that the top strip is the running light, and lights up full brightness all the time. I was going to wire in a resistor through a parallel circuit so that I could push a toggle switch to dim the running light at night, but after testing the light, I've decided against it, so the light will remain full brightness all the time. The top strip is also split into two section (left and right) which can be turned on/off independently. Both sections are on all the time as the running light, but when a turn signal is actuated, that respective side of the running light will blink off (when it normally would blink on), through the use of a relay to open the running light circuit. The other side of the running light (the other turn signal) will remain on at full brightness. The bottom light strip is only a brake light. In these pictures, the lights were so bright, the camera could not record the color correctly, so they showed up yellow, but both light strips are red (and are super bright).

Both lights on:


Brake off, left turn signal blinking off/on:


Brake off, right turn signal blinking off/on:


This picture is after all the wiring is complete and held in place with stick-on zip-tie anchors. This is the entire rear light unit with control relays built in.


I still need to drill holes and add spacers for the mounting points. I haven't done that because I haven't sorted out the rear fender yet, so I'm not sure of the mounting details yet. It is going to sit directly under the rear of the seat though, so that the curve of the light exactly matches the curve of the seat.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
915 Posts
Looks great. Will the lights pass state inspection?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
113 Posts
Discussion Starter · #132 ·
Looks great. Will the lights pass state inspection?
I don't see why not.. they're certainly bright enough and they are the correct color. I also used to work as a master mazda technician, so I have friends in that industry who will pass anything for me. Also, there are certain rules which this bike will be exempt from due to the fact that it will be registered as a low production custom build. The lights will pass though.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
160 Posts
The dented tank...

I don't know how you managed to do it, but that dented tank looks pretty classy. Reminds of one of those 'distressed' Telecasters Fender sold a few years back.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
113 Posts
Discussion Starter · #134 ·
Yes, that's it exactly! I love distressed pants, shirts, leather; metal with natural patina, anything that looks old and used. The best paint scheme I've ever seen on a car was on an old 40's mercury. It had the original faded blue paint, mostly worn off, with the exposed metal showing half a century of desert patina, and it was clear coated over the whole thing. The clear coat brought out the color of the patina so well.. it was something you could never artificially replicate, and it looked amazing. You literally would have to just let the metal patina in an arid environment for years and years.

That's why I don't really mind (and in fact, do like) the dented tank. It's just a bit of character from its first life and death. If the tank were painted, it wouldn't look as cool with the dents. It's the bare metal that changes the mental image presented by the dents from 'old and broken' to 'old and cool'. I've been thinking of using one of my old, tired-looking leather belts as an accent somewhere on the bike. Maybe down the center of the tank if it looks good with the stripes. I think that will really bring home the look I'm going for.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
77 Posts
Hatta,

First off, awesome job on that bike. I love that you've rescued that bike and given it a new life. Leaving the dents in the tank is being true to the bike's history. Just awesome. I can't wait to see the first ride vid.

I know you're busy, but when/if you have a minute would you post a little detail on how you went about painting the throttle bodies? I've been wanting to do that very thing, but don't have any experience with that sort of stuff. I know from what you've already written that you sealed up the obvious areas that don't need paint, used Eastwood pre and etch to carefully clean and prep them, then spray painted them, but can you whip up a little step by step sorta deal? What all did you protect from the chemicals? Were there any tricks/tips/whoops that would help us do it? What kind of paint did you use, and how many coats?

I know this is a lot to ask, but I'd really appreciate it. If I'm ever in your neck of the woods I'll buy you a few rounds.

Cheers.

BTW that first paragraph was not ass kissing. I honestly admire what you're doing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
113 Posts
Discussion Starter · #136 · (Edited)
I can try to do a basic step by step. This will be FI specific, but the process for carb bikes will be the same with just a few minor detail differences. If yours are carbs, you just need to modify these instructions a little bit to deal with different parts, and you'll have to drain out all the gas.

~Disassemble the throttle bodies:
Disconnect the throttle cables from the throttle body bracket. If you don't know how to adjust the throttle cables during reassembly, you can leave one positioning nut on each cable in place, and just unscrew the other nut on each cable. Then during reassembly, you can use the nut you didn't move to get your cables back to the same position.

Remove the choke bar that connects the choke knob to both throttle bodies. Take off the two screws, make sure you capture all 4 nylon washers AND the 2 small springs that sit between the choke bar and the plunger shafts. You'll have to grab those while you are removing the choke bar. There is also a small detent ball and spring behind the bar on the left side throttle body. Don't lose any of these. They're tiny, but important.

Remove the top caps, fuel injector wire harness, both plastic pieces that hold the harness (they slide right out the top after the caps are off), the two long assembly bolts that run horizontally across the throttle bodies, fuel injectors (make sure the injector seals come out with the injectors; if they don't, pull them out with a pick or whatever tool you have that will get them out without damaging them) and plastic fuel line that runs between the injectors (it slides out of the injectors as you pull the two throttle-bodies apart, and may be held in fairly tightly by the friction from the seals). You will notice the pipe has a round end and a hexagonal end, which coincide with specific injectors, but both sides slide out of the injectors. This was one of the pseudo-tricky parts. The two throttle plates move in sync via a shaft with a bracket on the end, where-by one throttle shaft pushes on the other to keep them moving together, and there are two springs between them. After you remove the two long assembly bots that run through the entire assembly, you have to pull the throttle bodies apart from each other, while pulling the plastic fuel tube out of one injector, and keeping track of the throttle shaft bracket springs. The long shiny metal spacers that the assembly bolts run through (between the throttle bodies) can be removed from both throttle bodies and set aside. This is as far as I disassembled the unit.

~Etching:
I did use fast etch, but for someone who is not inclined or experienced with this sort of thing, I would recommend not using it. It easily seeps and runs where you don't want it to go when applying it like you have to on throttle bodies (you can't just dunk them like you could other parts), and it's phosphoric acid, so it's dangerous. If you do use it, you absolutely don't want it getting on the choke plunger shafts, throttle shafts, plates, or anywhere inside the throttle body where the air flows (because if it gets in there, it will inevitable get on the throttle shaft/plate). Keep in mind that it is acid, so it will eat away at the surface of any metal on there, including bolts and electrical terminals. You don't have to worry about it getting on any of the plastic, but keep in mind that there is metal behind all the plastic, including some things you don't want to get the acid on. Etching plays an important role in making the paint adhere to the surface of the surface is very smooth, but I don't think it is necessary to use a separate etching acid on these throttle bodies. Mine were an unfinished metal with a fairly poor surface, so if I had skipped the etching and only done the degreasing, I think the paint would have bonded fine.

~Degreasing:
This step is vitally important. Get a good quality motorsports degreaser. I use a product at home called 'Powersports Cleaner' made by Simple Green. It works really well for a home product, and it's non-toxic and biodegradable. It doesn't work as well as industrial degreasers, but you really don't want to use those in your home (or at all). Be liberal with the cleaner, use an old toothbrush or something to that effect to scrub off all the grime and dirt, rinse off the loose material and degrease it again. Letting it soak in a tub of degreaser really helps. Get it as clean as you possibly can. Any amount of grease or wax left on the metal will prevent the paint from bonding. You can spray the entire thing or dunk it if you want, so don't be afraid to get the degreaser on any of the parts. Wash the entire thing with water and remove all the degreaser from any crevices. If it's as clean as you can get it (emphasis implied), let it dry (or dry it with a hair drier or heat gun). From this point on, you should wash your hands with soap prior to handling the parts, and handle them as little as possible. Skin oil is a liquid wax, and it will screw up your work.

~Final prep:
Tape off anything you don't want painted; electrical connectors, throttle body inlets and outlets, the open top of the throttle body, exposed parts of the throttle shafts and choke shafts (including where they enter the throttle bodies), anything else you don't want painted. I taped off the shiny, useless screws on the bottom of the throttle bodies just so they would stay shiny for that extra finish. If you are not going to paint right away, place the parts in a box so they don't accumulate dust or get touched. When you are ready to paint, use a product designed for final prep, such as Eastwood PRE (which is mostly just a solvent called acetone). I paid the higher price for the low VOC version of PRE, because VOCs are bad for you. Very bad. They're also bad for the environment [which is another way of saying it's bad for you]. Any time you can reduce your exposure to solvents, toxins or carcinogens, you absolutely should. Even if it costs more money or time. In the long run, it's worth it. (you'd be horrified to find out how many toxins you expose yourself to if you eat mostly processed foods and use store-bought cleaners and personal care products.. I won't even start that rant on the FDA right now). Spray a lint-free cloth with your pre-painting cleaner to get it damp, wipe down the entire part to be painted (as well as you can anyway). It will volatilize very quickly, so you will probably have to re-apply to the cloth to keep it damp. Alternatively, you can spray the part to be painted, but it will volatilize much quicker like this; so quick that you may not have time to wipe down the part. After this, don't touch the area to be painted.

~Painting:
I used VHT self-priming, corrosion resistant epoxy satin black paint, but you can use whatever you wish. You should definitely use a self-priming paint unless you plan to spray a primer first. I've had good results with this paint in the past, but the prep work needs to be done well. Spray multiple light coats, waiting between coats the amount of time stated on whichever paint you use (usually 10 minutes). Spraying light coats is the key to a nice finish. When you spray your first coat, it should look dry and not be complete coverage. Continue with coats similar to that. If you are trying to get a wet, complete coverage with every coat, it won't turn out well. Do 2-4 of these light coats. Your final coat can be a little bit heavier so that the paint looks wet. A good tip to remember is that when you have crevices that are difficult for the paint to get good coverage, spray those (light coats here too) before you spray each coat. If you wait until after you have sprayed a coat, and then try to get coverage in a difficult spot, you will get too much wet paint on the fresh coat of the surrounding area and it will probably run. Spray the difficult areas first, then blanket spray the rest of the part. That's pretty much it. let it dry properly before you handle it. Most paints are dry to the touch within an hour, but they are not dry. You can pick it up and move it if you need to after it is dry to the touch, but then don't handle it for a day at least. Most paints are not fully cured for at least a week, and they are not at full strength until they are cured. You don't have to wait a week to put it back together, just be aware that it is not at full strength yet.

~Reassembly:
I'm not going to say much here, as it's all pretty straightforward. Remember to put a bit of grease on the detent ball. Wipe off ALL visible grease (it will only collect dirt) just leaving a film of grease on the parts you are lubricating. When I lubricate moving parts like this, I use a high-temp, multipurpose grease that is made for wheel bearings, because it won't be washed away by water, and it is designed for extreme temperature/abuse. I use this simply because I already have it, and it's the best thing you can use for this type of assembly because it is so persistent. Lubricate the throttle shafts inside the throttle bodies (where it actually rides inside the throttle body housing). Get a spray can of teflon/ptfe lubricant, shake the can really well, use the little red straw that comes with it and spray a small amount onto the throttle shaft right where it disappears into the throttle body housing. Then rotate the throttle back and forth to help it work it's way in there. Wipe off all remaining lubricant so that it doesn't collect dirt/dust. Do the same on the choke shafts. Coincidentally, this is also a good spray to use on clutch and throttle cables.

Let me know if I missed anything or if you have other questions.
 
121 - 140 of 189 Posts
Top